Arkansas Self-Reports

FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas has self-reported at least two minor rule violations committed by the football team to the Southeastern Conference and the NCAA since March.

The violations include the improper use of text messages by an Arkansas official and phone calls between a recruit and someone other than coach Bobby Petrino or one of his assistants during an unofficial visit.

The information came back Thursday in response to a Freedom of Information Act request submitted by The Morning News earlier this week.

However, none of the information involved the minor violation that led Arkansas to suspend starting running back Michael Smith for last Saturday's season opener against Western Illinois.

Arkansas announced in a two-sentence release last week that Smith was suspended for one game because of improper use of scholarship textbooks. But university officials couldn't give any more information about the violation because of student privacy laws.

Much of the information regarding the two violations had been redacted before it was released to The Morning News.

On March 28-29, an individual at Arkansas broke the NCAA Bylaw, which states "all telephone calls made to and received from a prospective student-athlete (or the prospective student-athlete's parents, legal guardians or coaches) must be made and received by the head coach or one or more of the assistant coaches who count toward the numerical limitations."

On April 18-19, an Arkansas official inadvertently replied to a pair of text messages. By doing so, the individual broke the NCAA Bylaw that states the only electronically transmitted correspondence that may be sent to recruit is "electronic mail and facsimiles."

Minor violations are common at big-time schools, and they usually don't result in any severe punishment.

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